Miguel Zugaza: from Madrid to Bilbao

2014-06-Museo del Prado

Miguel Zugaza announces his decision to step down from the Prado and reassume the directorship of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum next year

This morning, Miguel Zugaza informed the Permanent Committee of the Royal Board of Trustees of his decision to conclude his term next year as director of the Museo del Prado after fifteen years in the position. He also announced his intention to reassume the post of director of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum on the retirement of its present director.

In a text addressed to Iñigo Méndez de Vigo, the Minister of Education, Culture and Sport, and to Unai Rementeria, Chairman of the Provincial Council of Bizkaia, Miguel Zugaza stated that he “considers the goals established during his term of office to have been fulfilled and expresses his thanks for all the support received.” The Museum’s Director for the past fifteen years considers that “the Museum is now embarking on a new and exciting phase with the focus on its bicentenary and on the completion of the Museo del Prado Campus with the addition of the Hall of Realms.” At the same time, he considers himself “extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to return to the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum (of which he was director between 1995 and 2001) and offer it all the experience he has acquired.”

The Minister of Education, Culture and Sport has personally thanked Miguel Zugaza for the services he has rendered the Museum over so many years and has asked him to continue to be involved in its bicentenary project through the Committee for the 2nd centenary of the Museo Nacional del Prado in 2019.

For his part and in the name of the Bilbao museum’s founding institutions (the City Council of Bilbao, the Provincial Government of Bizkaia and the Basque Government), the Chairman of the Provincial Council of Bizkaia and current president of the Bilbao museum’s Board of Trustees expressed his satisfaction at being able to count on Miguel Zugaza for leading the museum forward after the outstanding contribution made over the past years by Javier Viar Olloqui.

Both institutions have agreed to stay in contact in order to facilitate the transition of directorship of the respective museums. With this aim in mind, the Minister will propose to the Prado’s Royal Board of Trustees the creation of a specific committee at the Museum. As established in its statutes, it will initiate the selection procedure prior to the proposal of a new appointment to the Council of Ministers. Mr Zugaza will remain in his position with all the powers authorised by it until a new director is appointed.

José Pedro Pérez-Llorca, president of the Museum’s Royal Board of Trustees, wished to emphasise that “the Museo del Prado will never be able to sufficiently express its thanks to Miguel Zugaza for his intelligence, wisdom and imagination and the authority with which he has led the Museum”, and that “the results of his efforts, namely the great success of the Prado, speak for themselves.”

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